Coastal Conservation in a Pandemic—One Hundred Miles: Prioritizing Advocacy and Education

By Burch Barger

With the Georgia legislature suspended due to the Coronavirus pandemic and local volunteers and donors sheltering in place, the rhythm and location of Megan Desrosiers’ work as President and CEO of One Hundred Miles has changed.  But the mission has not. Megan and her staff remain committed to protecting our coast – “no matter when, no matter what” – and the necessary work of coastal conservation, in the forms of both advocacy and education, continues in the midst of this uncertain time.

On the state level, bills addressing coal ash, flood risk reduction projects, and land use restrictions in the Satilla River watershed are all still alive in the General Assembly. During this temporary hiatus, Megan and her staff continue to work at the grassroots level to ensure these issues remain priorities when the session reconvenes.  On the local level, One Hundred Miles continues to advocate against the proposed Spaceport in Camden County, to advocate for responsible revisions to the rural zoning ordinance in Glynn County, to push for cleanup of superfund sites in Glynn County, and to protect the Okefenokee Swamp from proposed nearby mining.

For coastal stewards who are eager to brush up on their ecological education and/or to connect with fellow conservationists while still sheltering at home, One Hundred Miles offers a variety of online programming. There are three weekly programs for digital nature education, including Nature in Your Neighborhood, Family Nature Friday, and Animals, Authors and Art. One Hundred Miles also facilitates an environmental book club that meets online and organizes advocacy workshops that are conducted virtually. For more information, visit their Facebook page.

One Hundred Miles is not immune to the economic impacts of Coronavirus. After taking difficult measures to reduce overhead costs and to stretch donor dollars to the farthest extent possible, Megan remains positive. She believes that, with the continued generosity of conservation donors, One Hundred Miles will be better and stronger in the long run.  To support the ongoing advocacy and education work of One Hundred Miles and to ensure the long term viability of this important organization, visit their website or call Megan Desrosiers at (912) 223-8608.